Wind cash bonus

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GIRVAN could be in line for a bumper payout from a windfarm plan which hopes to erect up to nine turbines at Tralorg.

PNE Wind hope to hold a public consultation and environmental study into the plan which it is proposed would include a "community turbine" which would generate cash for the town of Girvan and surrounding areas.

Project officer for PNE wind, Gilbert Stevenson, told a recent meeting of Girvan and District Community Council that the plan was still in the "early stages" and would include either eight or nine turbines on the site.

Mr Stevenson said the windfarm could benefit the community by providing annual payments and two full time jobs when the turbines are operational.

Mr Stevenson added that discussions with the Carrick Futures organisation, which distributes community benefit money raised by the construction and operation of windfarms, and the community council would need to take place to find out how the wind turbine package renumeration would be given to the community.

He cited examples such as an annual share or an equity share.

Mr Stevenson added that the plan had still to go to a public consultation before any planning application is put before members of South Ayrshire Council.

At the community council meeting in November this year local resident Kay Siddell told the meeting how the current situation with a windfarm currently adjoing her property in the Carrick area which she said had affected her and that a further windfarm at Tralorg would only add to her predicament.

Mrs Siddell said she was concerned about "constant noise" and the way in which background noise is measured on a scale which does not take into account the naturally peaceful environment.

Community councillors Jackie McDowall said that the project officer must keep in close consultation with Mrs Sidell and alleviate her fears as much as possible.

Community council chairman alec clark suggested that a sub group of the community council be formed which would consist of community councillors Lawrie Richmond, Ken Johnstone, Alec Clark, Jane Jardine and Lorraine Villager.

The Tralorg plan is not the only plan for a windfarm in the Carrick area. there are plans for 17 turbines to be erected at Assel valley with that project only seven or eight months away from construction.

Alec Clark said: "Whether you are for or against windfarms, or indifferent, Westminster and Holyrood are all for it. We are looking to minimise the impact and maximise the community benefit. There is now real big money going to come from the generation phase at the Arecleoch windfarm which will benefit the Girvan area and surrounding areas."